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Mutations insert, update and remove data from the database, check authentication or perform other business logic, and optionally return a response to the client application.

Mutation names

The naming of Mutations follows the exact same rules as that of queries, see Query names.

Queries and mutations can be defined in the same file when using named exports.

The mutation constructor

To declare a mutation in Convex use the mutation constructor function, and pass it an implementation function:

import { mutation } from "./_generated/server";

export default mutation(() => {
// implementation will be here

Mutation arguments and responses

Just like for queries, named arguments passed to your mutation from a client are accessible from the second parameter of the implementation function:

import { mutation } from "./_generated/server";

export default mutation((_, { a, b }) => {
// do something with `a` and `b`

Arguments are automatically serialized and deserialized, and you can pass and return most value-like JavaScript data to and from your function. See Field Values for the full list of supported types.

Unlike a query, a mutation does not have to return a value.

The first argument to the implementation function is reserved for the mutation context.

Mutation context

The mutation constructor enables writing data to the database, and other Convex features by passing a MutationCtx object to the implementation function as the first argument:

import { mutation } from "./_generated/server";

export default mutation((mutationCtx, { a, b }) => {
// Do something with `mutationCtx`

Which part of the mutation context is used depends on what your mutation needs to do:

  • To read from and write to the database use the db field. Note that we make the implementation function an async function so we can await the promise returned by db.insert():

    export default mutation(async ({ db }, { name }) => {
    await db.insert("items", { name });

    Read on about Writing Data.

  • To generate upload URLs for storing files use the storage field. Read on about File Storage.

  • To check user authentication use the auth field. Read on about Authentication.

Calling Mutations from Clients

To call a Mutation from React use the generated useMutation hook:

import { useMutation } from "../convex/_generated/react";

export function MyApp() {
const mutateSomething = useMutation("mutateSomething");
const handleClick = () => {
mutateSomething({ a, b });
// pass `handleClick` to a button

See Client Libraries for all the ways mutations can be called from different clients.


Mutations run transactionally. This means that:

  1. All database reads inside the transaction get a consistent view of the data in the database. You don't have to worry about a concurrent update changing the data in the middle of the execution.
  2. All database writes get committed together. If the Mutation writes some data to the database, but later throws an error, no data is actually written to the database.

For this to work, similarly to queries, mutations must be deterministic, and cannot call third party APIs. To call third party APIs, use actions.